• Gut microbiota as a source of novel antimicrobials

      Garcia-Gutierrez, Enriqueta; Mayer, Melinda J.; Cotter, Paul D.; Narbad, Arjan; Teagasc; Science Foundation Ireland; Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council; 2015066; SFI/12/RC/2273; SFI/11/PI/1137; et al. (Taylor & Francis, 2019-05-22)
      Bacteria, Archaea, Eukarya and viruses coexist in the human gut, and this coexistence is functionally balanced by symbiotic or antagonistic relationships. Antagonism is often characterized by the production of antimicrobials against other organisms occupying the same environmental niche. Indeed, close co-evolution in the gut has led to the development of specialized antimicrobials, which is attracting increased attention as these may serve as novel alternatives to antibiotics and thereby help to address the global problem of antimicrobial resistance. The gastrointestinal (GI) tract is especially suitable for finding novel antimicrobials due to the vast array of microbes that inhabit it, and a considerable number of antimicrobial producers of both wide and narrow spectrum have been described. In this review, we summarize some of the antimicrobial compounds that are produced by bacteria isolated from the gut environment, with a special focus on bacteriocins. We also evaluate the potential therapeutic application of these compounds to maintain homeostasis in the gut and the biocontrol of pathogenic bacteria.